June is Pride Month, which we dedicate to celebrating and uplifting our members of the LGBTQ community. This month is filled to the brim with history and culture, originating from the 1969 Stonewall Uprising in Manhattan that was a turning point for the gay rights movement in the United States.
Pride Month holds a heavy significance in the city of Orlando. June 2022 marks the six-year anniversary of the deeply tragic nightclub shooting at The Pulse in Orlando. That’s why it is so important to not only celebrate Pride loudly and proudly in Central Florida but to show support in honor of those who lost their lives and their family members.
There are a handful of ways to celebrate Pride Month in Orlando, from the Come Out With Pride festival at Lake Eola to Gay Days at the Disney World theme parks. If you want to show your support in other ways, there are also so many local businesses owned and operated by members of the LGBTQ members to highlight. Here are some small businesses that are staples to the Orlando area and worth a visit this month and beyond.
Dining & Nightlife
Se7en Bites is a hot spot in Orlando’s Milk District for nostalgic Southern breakfast, brunch, or lunch. Most mornings, there is a line out of the door and wrapped around the establishment for their signature buttermilk biscuits.
Se7en Bites is co-owned by chef Trina Gregory-Propst and her wife. The restaurant serves a variety of comfort foods with a modern twist from chicken biscuits with red pepper jelly to diner-style chicken pot pie.
The Glass Knife
The Glass Knife is the most vibrant and swanky spot to grab mouth-watering desserts, coffee and lunch dishes. This contemporary bakery is renowned for its luxury cakes, donuts and pastries.
For the month of June, you can get Pride-exclusive desserts such as the Pride snack cake or rainbow croissants.
Island Time is a laid-back neighborhood hangout for wine, beer and Caribbean-inspired dishes. Menu favorites include jerk pork sliders, bread pudding french toast, Jamaican pumpkin curry and house speciality frozen sangria.
What sets this local spot apart is its Drag Brunch hosted every Sunday on the porch for $15 per person.
Hungry Pants, owned by food entrepreneurs Joey Conicella and Alex Marin, is perfect for locals in need of vegan alternatives. This bright, casual cafe in the SODO district offers tasty comfort dishes that are still health-conscious and can be made with entirely plant-based ingredients.
Chef Art Smith’s Homecomin’
If you’re on a Southern food streak, you should also stop by Chef Art Smith’s Homecomin’ at Disney Springs. This is the perfect place to grab a crispy and comforting fried chicken platter with a side of cheddar drop biscuits, especially after a tiring day at the Disney World theme parks. This restaurant is always well-known for its moonshine and whiskey cocktails.
The owner Chef Art Smith is a Southern cuisine expert and has cooked personally for a handful of celebrities.
If you’re looking for nightlife, Savoy is a highly-recognized gay bar and nightclub in Downtown Orlando’s Ivanhoe Village. Here you can always find dynamic entertainment, great music, billiards and an outdoor patio for wining and dining.
The Hammered Lamb
The Hammered Lamb is another lively pub across the street from Lake Ivanhoe in Downtown Orlando. If you’re looking for a chill night of drinks, lamb-centric dishes and shareables, live music and ping pong, this is your spot.
The Hammered Lamb also takes pride in its environmental practices and heavy involvement in the local community. The pub is always giving back to the organizations it supports, including the One Pulse Foundation and The Barber Fund.
Out of The Closet
At Out Of The Closet, 96 cents of every dollar from a purchase or donation goes into the AIDS Healthcare Foundation. This funky thrift store is dedicated to funding life-saving programs and medical care for patients in the Orlando community and even offers free HIV testing services. The nonprofit chain not only has unique, eclectic pieces to shop from, but does wonders for LGBTQ health advocacy.